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Can a Driver’s License Suspension happen even without a DUI conviction?

Recently I was asked why their license showed a DUI suspension when the case was dismissed after review of the DUI arrest report. Santa Barbara DUI lawyers know that a mere dismissal, even one based on an insufficiency of the evidence, will generally not rescind the Administrative Per Se Suspension order of the DMV. The Administrative Per Se s uspension is a DUI suspension which differs from the driver’s license suspension following a DUI conviction.

California Vehicle Code §13353.2 (e) provides if a person is acquitted of criminal charges relating to a determination of facts …., the department shall immediately reinstate the person’s privilege to operate a motor vehicle if the department has suspended it administratively.

§13353.2 (e) further states if criminal charges are not filed by the district attorney because of a lack of evidence, or if those charges are filed but are subsequently dismissed by the court because of an insufficiency of evidence, the person has a renewed right to request an administrative hearing before the department. The request for a hearing shall be made within one year from the date of arrest.

So much depends on whether there was an acquittal or a dismissal and whether by the court because of an insufficiency of evidence or in the interest of justice. The DMV, a very separate entity than a court, has separate and unique rules regarding a DUI Suspension reinstatement versus a renewed right to a hearing with the DMV.  The decision of a district attorney to not file charges is not the equivalent of an “acquittal’ within the meaning of §13353.2(e), however it does trigger the right to a renewed hearing.

If you have been arrested for DUI Santa Barbara Attorney Kenneth M. Hallum offers a free case consultation. Call today 805-564-3101. Know your rights, options and defenses against drunk driving, and potential driver’s license suspension, whether through the DMV Administrative Per Se process, or post court conviction process.

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About Santa Barbara DUI Attorney Kenneth M. Hallum:
As a DUI defense attorney, Kennnth Hallum is dedicated to an understanding of the art and science of California DUI defense with memberships in the California DUI Lawyers Association, the National College of DUI Defense, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the California Public Defenders Association, and the State Bar of California.

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